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Removing Dry Ink From Pelikan 800



elysee

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What is the best way in which to remove dry ink from inside a Pelikan M800 or any piston-fill fountain pen? While I can run the nib under water, I do not want to damage the piston by trying to draw water through the piston filling system.

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  • elysee

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I think soaking it in lukewarm water that reaches partway up the section for a few hours should do the trick for ink stuck in the nib unit. After that, perhaps removing the nib unit then injecting water into the barrel by syringe should do the trick. If you want though, you can take the entire piston unit out in the same manner as a TWSBI 5x0's piston unit. Just requires a TWSBI wrench.

Calculating.

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I'd spin the nib out then you can hold the open end under the cool water from the faucet which should help flush it out.

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Hi,

 

If the ink has truly stopped easy turning of the piston knob, I suggest the following tedious process that I used to rescue an M400 that was jammed tight with dried Sailor Black nano ink. It wasn't my pen, so I was very cautious.

  • Soak the pen (nib down) in a container of water, changing the water from time to time until most of the dried ink is removed.
  • Clean the cap internals.
  • Hold the pen in a horizontal posture, rotated so the feed is upward, then slowly drip water onto the feed comb so the capillary action of the feed draws ink into the collector and onwards to the ink reservoir. (Be patient.)
  • When the ink reservoir is about half full, cap the pen, then gently shake/rock the pen so the water sloshes around in the reservoir. Let the capped pen rest for a while nib upwards, so the water is covering the piston head.
  • Try to unscrew the nib+feed - very gently so as not to torque the nib itself away from its mount. viz. http://www.richardspens.com/?info=nibswap
  • Once the nib+feed are removed, go about cleaning as if it was an eyedropper, then try to turn the piston. If no joy, switch from water to a solution of one part 5% unscented household ammonia in nine parts water for rinsing. Keep exposure time to that solution less than eight hours, with lots of sloshing & rocking.

Patience is the watchword.

 

Bye,

S1

The only time you have too much fuel is when you're on fire.

 

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ziptrickhead

I would recommend going with Sandy1's procedure over jumping straight to taking the piston out. If you can unscrew the nib and feed out from the get go then even better because that'll save you some time. Don't use too much pressure though since it'll probably be stuck with dry ink. The only issue with taking out the piston is that it requires you to unscrew the piston knob up so at that point you might as well just try to draw water through the feed and into the barrel. And of course with some piston fillers you aren't able to just take the piston mechanism out.

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+1 for soaking and sloshing over unscrewing.

 

It's all about application of force. Work with the least force possible: water and soaking, then step up to chemical force: ammonia dilution, and only then resort to physical force: unscrewing and scrubbing with a tiny q-tip (Tamiya makes tiny cotton swabs you can find on ebay for a couple of dollars.)

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I've never heard water could damage a piston mechanism. Is that accurate?

Since there is dried ink in the ink reservoir, trying to flush it out could damage the inside plunger just as dragging a rubber spatula over burned or dried food in a bowl or pan would damage the rubber spatula. In addition, trying to advance the plunger will not remove the dried ink. At most this would flake some of the dried ink while possibly damaging the plunger. Since I value my pen, I do not want to take any chances on damaging it.

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Check out this video on YouTube:

 

 

The problem with the video is that it is for the standard cleaning not the dried-ink-in-the-pen cleaning. Usually, she has a thorough cleaning before being put away. However, she got out of the rotation (put aside without cleaning) and, thus, the ink evaporated and dried. Therefore, this problem -- new to me as I have always carefully cleaned my pens -- was created.

 

Thanks, anyway. : )

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I'd spin the nib out then you can hold the open end under the cool water from the faucet which should help flush it out.

This sounds like a nice starter option. I will externally clean the nib and, then, see if I can take out the nib.

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+1 for soaking and sloshing over unscrewing.

It's all about application of force. Work with the least force possible: water and soaking, then step up to chemical force: ammonia dilution, and only then resort to physical force: unscrewing and scrubbing with a tiny q-tip (Tamiya makes tiny cotton swabs you can find on ebay for a couple of dollars.)

I do not plan on removing the piston. I will do some soaking and sloshing. It would be great if sloshing and holding the pen under water would allow some water to enter the ink chamber. If that can happen then the dried ink will not be a problem any more. If necessary, I will try to take out the nib but I do not want to do anything that disturbs the nib/feed as she is a great wet writer.

 

Thanks! : )

Edited by elysee
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Hi,

  • [*]
Soak the pen (nib down) in a container of water, changing the water from time to time until most of the dried ink is removed.

[*]Clean the cap internals.

[*]Hold the pen in a horizontal posture, rotated so the feed is upward, then slowly drip water onto the feed comb so the capillary action of the feed draws ink into the collector and onwards to the ink reservoir. (Be patient.)

[*]When the ink reservoir is about half full, cap the pen, then gently shake/rock the pen so the water sloshes around in the reservoir. Let the capped pen rest for a while nib upwards, so the water is covering the piston head.

 

This should work quite nicely as it will allow the dried ink to become wet again. After that, i can proceed with a standard cleaning.

 

Thanks! : )

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I will do some soaking/cleaning tomorrow and let you know how it goes.

 

THANK YOU ALL VERY MUCH!! : ) I GREATLY appreciate your help and your kindness!!

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  • 4 weeks later...

UPDATE: Soaking, sloshing, and capillary action did the trick! My lovely pen is now clean and ready for use!

 

Thank you! : )

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Good to hear a successful "save."

 

I have a small ultrasonic cleaner that I use for things like this. Its great for when I get a used pen and have to clean out the dry ink from the feed/nib. Even after flushing with a bulb syringe, the ultrasonic results in a gushing cloud of ink coming out of the nib. There are fairly inexpensive ultrasonic cleaners. Mine is a denture cleaner, not the high powered commercial stuff.

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Good to know the problem was resolved. I did the same trick with a couple of Pelikans, soak it for a bit, fill it halfway and shake.

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Bo Bo Olson

I just stick them under water in the sink.

That was a modern pen.

I buy vintage.

I just love ancient dried Pelikan Royal Blue.The pretty blue cloud. It cleans in a jiffy. (Remember if you are going to stick your piston pen in back of the drawer for a decade or a generation; use Only Pelikan Royal Blue :thumbup: ...or Lamy)

 

When I get ink in dark dark blue in strings. I know I got an old iron gall ink, and it's going to take a day's worth of work...going back to the sink in running water through the piston.

 

Of course in I buy vintage I have no experience with dried out supersaturated Noodler's.

There is also JB flush. I'm sure the JP could clean out my inks faster...in sight out of mind because of force of habit. :doh:

Pure blind stupidity, is another way to say that. :wallbash:

 

 

 

 

 

When done, you should take a rice corn of pure 100% silicon grease to the sides of the barrel just under the piston to re-lube it.

Rick says you shouldn't need to to that but once every 3 years.

 

I second Rick's advice...and I don't know for beans...but a Pelikan is not made to be taken apart all the time like a Twsbi or an Ahab. You add too much wear to the pen being AR with cleaning it.

German vintage '50-70 semi-flex stubs and those in oblique give the real thing in On Demand line variation. Modern Oblique is a waste of money for a shadow of line variation. Being too lazy to Hunt for affordable vintage oblique pens, lets you 'hunt' for line variation instead of having it.

RIP...200's once great nib, now a double ball.:crybaby::wallbash:

 

The cheapest lessons are from those who learned expensive lessons. Ignorance is best for learning expensive lessons.

 

 

 

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UPDATE: Soaking, sloshing, and capillary action did the trick! My lovely pen is now clean and ready for use!

 

Thank you! : )

 

Hi,

 

Glad it worked! There's many ways to clean a pen, and I prefer to do as much as possible without taking the pen to bits.

 

Oh, I did want to ask what ink dried-up to cause a frozen piston? And did you need to use anything other than plain water to remove the nib+feed or free the piston?

 

Bye,

S1

The only time you have too much fuel is when you're on fire.

 

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